Choo Choo Charlie, Plus: Musto On The Move

Folks have been asking me: What happened to Charlie Coviello? Well, Charlie’s the former Democratic mayoral candidate that dropped out of the race last summer to endorse Bill Finch.

Everyone expected Coviello, a realtor, to nail a city job, perhaps in the economic development office. Charlie recently met with Finch who told him the news–no job for you.

This has got to be a real bite in the butt for Coviello for a variety of reasons. Shortly after Coviello’s endorsement Finch told just about anyone willing to listen to him that the Coviello endorsement was huge. Finch said so in press releases, at public rallies, at community meetings, at debates. Charlie’s a man with a mission, Finch said, to help us attract jobs and clean up neighborhoods.

Coviello had met several times last summer with the camps of Finch and State Rep. Chris Caruso to carve out a deal for support. What exactly was offered in the way of a city job is unclear. The cash-rich Finch camp, however, was willing to pay Coviello as a consultant to the mayoral campaign to help captain the turnout. Finch won the primary by 270 votes, a vote swing of just 135 electors. Coviello was beaming on primary night. He picked the right horse. Then the saddle fell off.

Finch has been dealing with a grueling first budget that calls for a tax increase and layoffs. He clearly doesn’t have the patronage jobs to make everyone happy, although a number of campaign supporters have landed on the payroll.

Captain Coviello is not happy.

Gusto For Musto

I had a quick chat this morning with Anthony Musto, Democratic candidate running for Republican Rob Russo’s state senate seat. Priority number one is lining up the support for the party nominating convention scheduled for May 19. Musto, the Trumbull town treasurer and an attorney, received a nice piece of news last night when Bridgeport City Council President Tom McCarthy told him that he was not running for the seat and would be supporting Musto.

The only other potential Democratic challenger for Musto out there appears to be Marilyn Moore, former aide to State Sen. Ed Gomes. I’ve not heard of any other names, but you never know. The senate district includes Trumbull and parts of Bridgeport and Monroe. Russo was elected in March in a special election after Finch vacated the seat.

It’s one of the legislative races to watch in addition to Auden Grogins’ primary challenge of State Rep. Bob Keeley, the longest serving legislator in Bridgeport history, and the primary to fill the state rep seat of the retiring Felipe Reinoso that covers the South End, and portions of West End and East Side.

I need to check in with Keeley about some legislative skinny. He’s never short on a good story. Yo, Bobby, tell everyone in Hartford to read the blog!



  1. Hartford is not short on problems. There is talk that the Governor’s budget will not be re-opened so any of those plum pieces of new legislation like money for PILOTs will turn into prunes. No new nurses for nursing homes, no money to support home invasion bill, no early success reading money (unless they are hiding rabbits under their hats) will go away, so the Kindergarten children will be learing their ABCs, 123s in a half day program instead of a full. And what is anyone doing about it? In a addition to the Mayor’s office efforts, we need the council, people from this City, this blog, to scream what about us? Go up to Hartford, e-mail legislators, call them on the phone. For a complete list of who to pester see www – But you can start with Caruso whose efforts are being spent trying to pass a law to recall 4 yr elected municipal officals (aka Mayor). Where is Gomes, Ayala, Clemmons, Hennesy and Keeley? Make them accountable! It is an election year, show us the money!!!

  2. Gomes, Ayala,Clemmons & Hennesy are a total waste of time and even though i am a Democrat i will not vote for the ones from my district. enough of their do nothing get nothing representation. Keeley as chair of the bonding committee it would be in Bridgeports interest if you held up bonding to key legislative districts through out the state.

  3. Can somone tell me why Connecticut is the only State on the East Coast without any tolls. I know that is a dirty word but we need revenue.
    What is wrong with putting tolls on all the main highways leading into Connecticut? We are paying for all the damage caused by the big trucks and excessive travel on our roads. The revenue generated by these tolls could go for road repairs and the money presently used for those repairs could go to the Pilot program and to keeing all day kindergartens open.
    Please dont tell me we would loose federal Highway Funds if we put tolls on the borders. All the other states do it and still get Federal Monies.

  4. wondering, I’ve been saying that for years. The states that border Connecticut all have tolls and when we cross their borders, we pay to use their roads. Why don’t we do the same thing? All states get federal money for roads, I don’t understand why Connecticut doesn’t put the tolls back. We are losing a lot of money by giving “free rides.”

  5. Kitty: Could part of the reason be that the powers to be dont want to annoy our ultra rich neighbors in Greenwich.
    The other excuse is the tragedy that happened many years ago at the Stratford Tolls
    In this day of E-Z Pass and a properly configured toll area I dont think that would happen again. You dont read about those kind of tragedies in New York .
    We need added income and it should not come from the Connecticut tax payers alone.

  6. Make the tolls on incoming traffic only so traffic backs up outside our borders. Into CT from NY on 95 and 84 NY, From RI on 95, from Mass on 91, 80 etc..

  7. I just paid $3.25 for a loaf of whole wheat bread, $3.99 for 1/2 gallon of milk and $3.90 for a gallon of gas. I frankly have no more room in my budget to pay a tax or a toll (whatever you want to call it) to drive my car back and forth to work.

  8. It would also alleviate some traffic. Between higher gas prices and new tolls, Connecticut residents traveling for a night out in the city would use the train. NYC would probably be happy too, having the car traffic decrease slightly on the weekends. Though I’m usually not a fan of hurting interstate commerce in favor of generating money for people who don’t really spend it well.

  9. Wondering, I’ve been saying it for a long time, its time for toll boothes to make a comeback in CT. Every other state does it. Too bad about the rich folks in Greenwich, they don’;t seem to mind paying a toll to go to NYC or Westchester. yahooy-maybe it would bring down our sales tax or income tax. the people that come here to our casinos are a perfect example, not to mention thousands of trucks every day. They put wear and tear on our roads and we get nothing for it. If every other state is doing it, then it can’t hurt us to follow suit. I vaguely recall the Stratford toll accident, but accidents can happen anywhere.

  10. Wondering,
    You do not know who your State Senator and State Representative are?
    For someone who seems to know everything about policy and politics, not knowing who your representatives in Hartford is unfathomable.
    But it did put a grin on my face.

  11. Grin – sometimes I think it does’nt matter who our representatives in Hartford are and whether we know them or not. I can’t think of one shining star in the whole bunch of them. They are an embarrassment to B-port and we should get rid of the whole damn bunch of them and elect candidates who will help people like us who got them elected in the first place.

  12. Grin Reaper I know who they are but if I say who they are certain people who are trying to find out who I am will know, Sounds paranoid and I guess there is a little of that but i cant take the chance. Believe me I have spoken to them. I stand to loose a lot if my ID is revealed.

  13. Wondering….nobody cares who you are. Man, all of you Toll Supporters should go back to the Bridgeport Public School system for a refresher in smarts. With a 68% drop out rate, you won’t have any trouble finding a seat.

    Restoring the tolls is a very bad idea. In order to stay toll free, we raised the gas tax and nearly doubled to cost of diesel. There is also a federal gas tax that provides funds for highway maintenance. Tolls just at the borders will never fly. All that will do is create an off and on situation for semis and other vehicles who want to avoid the toll.

    We need other ways to increase revenues.

  14. All of the states that have tolls also have gasoline taxes and also pay the Federal gas tax. Do you really think that the trucks are going to get off I-95 before Greenwich and circumvent the tolls I think not. Truckers for the most part work and get paid for the numbr of trips they make and time is a factor.
    Where else do the trucks gt off the main highway to avoid tolls? Its you i think who needs to take a refresher in Math. The gas tax is not covering highway repair and maintainance. Why do other states have tolls? INCOME!!
    How much money in gas taxes are the truckers and out of town cars contributing to our (Connecticut) economy. Most truckers and regular commuters who travel our highways know enough to fill up before entering Conncticut because of the high gas taxes and thus dont contribute to the gas tax revenue.

  15. The more revenue you provide to the State the more jobs they create for political hacks. Once a position is created it’s impossible to eliminate it. Each job has many perks and the taxpayers just keep paying. It’s a vicious cycle.
    Smarten up, although one wonders whether that’s a possibility with a 68% drop out rate in the Bridgeport schools.

  16. Yahooy’ Brilliant response to my last post. Thats the best you can do. I answered your challenge and the best is some childish Thbbbt. Every topic I speak about you have some sort of response although you offer no alternatives. A little like Bob Walsh.
    Con Filardi So what you are saying is dont try an increase state revenues because all the jobs go to political hacks. Duh!!

  17. Todays paper has an article about privatizing the Health Clinics ( yahooy I can Read) and again our friend Bob Walsh weighs in with a negative response. it seems that he is worried that the layed off workers that may be hired by the selected health care firm would be paid less than they make with the city. Thats to bad thats how it is in private industry.Most of the people being layed off live out of town so am I supposed to worry.
    Does anyone really care who provides the clinical health care to the children as long as it is provided. If this privatization saves the city money and offers the clinical health care to the kids I am all for it.
    One of the outside firms operates a clinic at Dunbar school and to date there have been no public complaints about their services.
    Privatize the Clinics and lets move forward

  18. wondering, I agree with you completely. And Bob Walsh does what he always does, so predictable and useless. B-port doesn’t need to be in the health care business, and providing dental & health care in schools is just plain stupid when people can go to a free clinic. The service is still there, they just have to go to a differnt place to get it. I wish I could get free medical & dental care, so people shouldn’t complain when they have to go a little bit out of their way.


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